Federal Advocacy & Weekly Policy Update

Congressional Update

            Secretary DeVos to Testify about FY21 Education Budget Request

Secretary DeVos is scheduled to testify next week, before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies. The Secretary will be the only witness and her testimony will focus on the president’s fiscal year 2021 budget request, which asked Congress to cut the Department of Education’s budget by 8.5% and to consolidate Title I and many other Elementary and Secondary Education Act programs into a single block grant. MSBA and NSBA strongly opposes the president’s proposed budget cuts and consolidation plan and we will work with members of the House and Senate to oppose it. The hearing is scheduled for Thursday, February 27 (10:00 AM EST) andwill be livestreamed here.

House Education Committee to Host Apprenticeship Hearing

The House Higher Education and Workforce Investment Subcommitteehas scheduled a hearing titled “Reauthorizing the National Apprenticeship Act: Strengthening and Growing Apprenticeships for the 21st Century.” The hearing is a precursor to expected bipartisan committee work to update the NAA, including emphasizing high need areas, such as early childhood educators. We expect Chairman Scott (D-VA) and Ranking Member Foxx (R-NC) to release draft apprenticeship legislation for public comment later this year. The hearing will be held on Thursday, February 27 (10:15 AM EST).  Witnesses have not yet been announced.  The hearing will be livestreamed here.

Administration Update

FCC Seeks Public Comment about Net Neutrality

This week, the FCC invited public comment on aspects of the agency’s Net Neutrality decision, which were overturned by a recent court decision. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals remanded key elements of the FCC’s rollback of net neutrality. In particular, the court decision said the agency must consider how the FCC’s decision affects public safety, Lifeline service, and broadband infrastructure. The rulemaking provides an opportunity for school districts to urge the FCC to provide protections to ensure that schools and students are not harmed by carrier decisions to block websites, “throttle” services, and preference their own or their partners’ online content. Public comments must be submitted on or before March 30, 2020.

 

About mnmsba

The Minnesota School Boards Association, a leading advocate for public education, supports, promotes and strengthens the work of public school boards.
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